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Steven Wilson - The Harmony Codex - Music designed for Atmos. And for stereo? Comparison between Amazon HD and Tidal Dolby Atmos.

Jean.Francois

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Hello,
The Harmony Codex" is Steven Wilson's seventh solo album, scheduled for release on September 29, 2023. It's an experimental and varied album, containing 10 tracks, 3 of which are already available: "Economies of Scale" , "Impossible Tightrope" (10 minutes) and "Rock Bottom".

The Harmony Codex - small.jpg



The album is available in Stereo and Dolby Atmos.
We can only congratulate Steven Wilson on the work that has gone into this album, and on offering a matering that doesn't submit to loudness war, which is rare these days for this kind of music.

Waveform - The Harmony Codex - Amazon (3) - small.jpg

Waveform of the three tracks with a DR11.

But the great novelty is to have a musical work designed for spatial sound. Just listen on a Dolby Atmos 7.1.4 configuration to enter Steven Wilson's musical universe.

The Harmony Codex - Spatialisation Atmos - piste_ 1 -- small.jpg

Spatialization of the first "Economies of Scale" track

Even if you prefer stereo listening, try listening to this album on a good Dolby Atmos configuration, and you'll discover a different way of listening to this album. As on the track "Economies of Scale", the music is really all around us, swirling and twirling through all the channels. This is music designed for spatial rendering, with instruments and voices spread throughout the sound space.
It is indeed another way of listening to music, but when it's designed for it, which is the case here, it's a really interesting approach, and it's then difficult to go back to the stereo version, which lacks space compared to Atmos. This album is a reference for this format.

Now available on streaming, the Dolby Atmos version will also be available on Blu-ray, with Dolby Digital TrueHD encoding, a Lossless format that should bring more finesse to the reproduction, at a bit rate that can exceed 10,000 kbits/s, compared with the 768 kbits/s of the streaming version.

You can find the extracts and all the measurements in the review of the first 3 tracks HERE.

Enjoy listening,

Jean-François
 

Galliardist

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Still, the Qobuz version released today in stereo is just fine!
 

ZööZ

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It's a real shame Tidal doesn't support Atmos output from the windows app. But on the other hand I'll have to concentrate solely on the music when using the smart tv app (only way I have to output Atmos from Tidal to my setup)

Album sounds great even on my setup (6.2.2 with the surrounds further back than I would like because of the layout of the room), makes me regret I haven't installed my top rears yet, they should improve the experience further or atleast that 's my understanding skimming teh internets.
 

RF Air

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napfkuchen

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I was invited to a pre-release listening event for Harmony Codex. Steven is working to develop his tour production with the L-ISA Technology. See my post here: What is Ultra High Resolution? Previewing L-ISA spatial audio technology presentation on an immersive 18.1.12 ultra-high resolution sound system.
Thanks for the review and also the other comparisons on your blog. I've tested apple music for a while and was not really happy with the presentation of most Dolby Atmos tracks. However, maybe give it a second chance with Tidal streaming (seems to be available via the X3800). On a personal note: I already own a Steven Wilson Blu-Ray, that's enough. Not my cup of tea, unfortunately. He should put more effort into mixing other bands music. :)
 
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